5 Ingredients or Fewer

Plum and Star Anise Jam

September 19, 2010
3 Ratings
  • Makes about 3 cups
Author Notes

In the summer, I become a compulsive fruit buyer. As I walk through the Greenmarket, the bursting berries and the plump peaches erase any memory that there's already a bowl full of fruit sitting at home. So then I end up with more plums (and nectarines and tomatoes) than I can reasonably eat while they're still at their peak. This small-batch recipe comes from my first-ever attempt to make jam when I was staring down an avalanche of plums recently. There weren't enough to justify going through the entire preserving process, though, so the batch is small. It derives its sweetness more from the fruit than from sugar, so it isn't too cloying. My favorite ways to enjoy the jam: mixed into plain yogurt and on top of toasted baguette spread with chèvre. —vvvanessa

What You'll Need
  • 2 pounds fresh, ripe plums (preferably red-fleshed), pitted and cut into big chunks
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 piece of star anise
  • pinch of sea salt
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture begins to bubble, stirring often. Lower to a simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes, continuing to stir occasionally to keep fruit from scorching. The jam is ready when the fruit is mostly broken down and a good amount of the liquid is evaporated. The jam will continue to thicken as it cools.
  2. Allow to cool to room temperature. Remove the anise, taking care to find any stray arms of the star that might have fallen away. Store the jam in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, or freeze in small containers for up to a few months.
Contest Entries

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Adelucchi
  • TheWimpyVegetarian
  • lapadia
  • AntoniaJames

5 Reviews

Adelucchi July 21, 2014
Thanks so much for this recipe. I just inherited our 91 year old cousin's boiling water bath and my 100 year old mother-in-law's mason jars! My grandmother and mother always canned fruit and vegetables. I'm so excited to get back to canning. This recipe is just perfect for me to start again. . The plums came from my mother- in-law's tree. They are on the burner right now looking gorgeous with their deep ruby red color. I'm planning to use the water bath canner on them. Thanks again for this recipe. Want to share them with my mother-in-law. Yes she's still alive in her own home!!
TheWimpyVegetarian September 19, 2010
I just happen to have a bunch of plums in the frig I had thought to use for jam. And now I have the recipe to try! Thanks, this looks really great!!
lapadia September 19, 2010
Ditto, I love it and your story, Vanessa. I use to have a plum tree (sad face) and made a similar recipe swapping star anise for nutmeg and a little orange zest, kept in the freezer nicely.
AntoniaJames September 19, 2010
The nutmeg plus orange sound just heavenly, lapadia! Thanks for suggesting it. It's apparent now that I'll be making two different small batches. Mmmmmm, yum! ;o)
AntoniaJames September 19, 2010
Love it! We still have great looking plums in our markets, so I'll be trying this next weekend. Thank you for posting this!